So at the table next to us this morning at breakfast was a mean looking lady and a fidgety young child.
The lady as we found out over the course of their dialogue was the child’s grandmother.
And she wouldn’t stop berating this kid, maybe 5-years old.
Grandmother: “Don’t you dare get up from the table until I’m done with my coffee, [and then this weird chilling] thank you.”
Child: Obviously looking to run around and have some fun, “But I just want to go.”
Grandmother: Who has finished her breakfast and coffee and is just making a continuing point, “You’ll wait until I’m done, and I say we’re ready, [and again, the long controlling pause and then] thank you.”
Child: “I’m tired.”
Grandmother: “Then you’ll go upstairs, get back into bed and go to sleep, and no tv, just sleep–you will not move!”
Child: Looks up helplessly sad.
Grandmother: Now the truth starts to come out, “You know I don’t like the way you treat you mother. Your disrespectful! And that won’t go with me.”
Child: Appears to not really understand what she is saying and legs dangle anxiously off the chair, but clearly very afraid to get up.
Grandmother: “You’ll learn to be respectful to your mother. You will learn!”
Child: Head leaning sideways on table, says nothing.
Grandmother: Makes child wait some more and more, and finally, “Now we can go.”
Child: Child picks head up and runs to take her hand.
Grandmother: Sneers and smirks with her power over the child–she looks like a freakin’ witch.
Whole scene was sort of heartbreaking.
My wife and I look at each other, and shake our heads.
This was not teaching or loving, but something else and it wasn’t normal or nice.
I say, “Perhaps, when a child is abused this way–day after day, year after year–this is why they grow up and then do horrible and hateful things.”
It’s amazing how adults take out their issues on children–and they think it’s legit–but deep down you can see it really isn’t–and the children and society pays for the sins of the adults. 😉
(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)